810nm near-infrared light offers neuroprotection and improves locomotor activity in MPTP-treated mice
We explored whether 810nm near-infrared light (NIr) offered neuroprotection and/or improvement in locomotor activity in an acute 1-methyl-4-phenyl-1,2,3,6-tetrahydropyridine (MPTP)-treated mouse model of Parkinson’s disease. Mice received MPTP and 810nm NIr treatments, or not, and were tested for locomotive activity in an open-field test. Thereafter, brains were aldehyde-fixed and processed for tyrosine hydroxylase immunohistochemistry. Our results showed that MPTP-treated mice that were irradiated with 810nm NIr had both greater locomotor activity (∼40%) and number of dopaminergic cells (∼20%) than those that were not. In summary, 810nm (as with 670nm) NIr offered neuroprotection and improved locomotor activity in MPTP-treated mice.
Keywords: Neuroprotection; Substantia nigra; Tyrosine hydroxylase.
Photobiomodulation Suppresses Alpha-Synuclein-Induced Toxicity in an AAV-Based Rat Genetic Model of Parkinson’s Disease
Converging lines of evidence indicate that near-infrared light treatment, also known as photobiomodulation (PBM), may exert beneficial effects and protect against cellular toxicity and degeneration in several animal models of human pathologies, including neurodegenerative disorders. In the present study, we report that chronic PMB treatment mitigates dopaminergic loss induced by unilateral overexpression of human α-synuclein (α-syn) in the substantia nigra of an AAV-based rat genetic model of Parkinson’s disease (PD). In this model, daily exposure of both sides of the rat’s head to 808-nm near-infrared light for 28 consecutive days alleviated α-syn-induced motor impairment, as assessed using the cylinder test. This treatment also significantly reduced dopaminergic neuronal loss in the injected substantia nigra and preserved dopaminergic fibers in the ipsilateral striatum. These beneficial effects were sustained for at least 6 weeks after discontinuing the treatment. Together, our data point to PBM as a possible therapeutic strategy for the treatment of PD and other related synucleinopathies.
Conflict of interest
statementCompeting Interests: The authors have declared that no competing interests exist. We have the following interests: This work was in part supported by Medos International Sàrl, a Johnson&Johnson company. Co-authors Blaise Lovisa and Yanik Tardy are employed by Medos International Sàrl, a Johnson&Johnson company. There are no patents, products in development or marketed products to declare. This does not alter the authors’ adherence to all the PLOS ONE policies on sharing data and materials, as detailed online in the guide for authors.
Reduced axonal transport in Parkinson’s disease cybrid neurites is restored by light therapy
It has been hypothesized that reduced axonal transport contributes to the degeneration of neuronal processes in Parkinson’s disease (PD). Mitochondria supply the adenosine triphosphate (ATP) needed to support axonal transport and contribute to many other cellular functions essential for the survival of neuronal cells. Furthermore, mitochondria in PD tissues are metabolically and functionally compromised. To address this hypothesis, we measured the velocity of mitochondrial movement in human transmitochondrial cybrid “cytoplasmic hybrid” neuronal cells bearing mitochondrial DNA from patients with sporadic PD and disease-free age-matched volunteer controls (CNT). The absorption of low level, near-infrared laser light by components of the mitochondrial electron transport chain (mtETC) enhances mitochondrial metabolism, stimulates oxidative phosphorylation and improves redox capacity. PD and CNT cybrid neuronal cells were exposed to near-infrared laser light to determine if the velocity of mitochondrial movement can be restored by low level light therapy (LLLT). Axonal transport of labeled mitochondria was documented by time lapse microscopy in dopaminergic PD and CNT cybrid neuronal cells before and after illumination with an 810 nm diode laser (50 mW/cm2) for 40 seconds. Oxygen utilization and assembly of mtETC complexes were also determined.
The velocity of mitochondrial movement in PD cybrid neuronal cells (0.175 +/- 0.005 SEM) was significantly reduced (p < 0.02) compared to mitochondrial movement in disease free CNT cybrid neuronal cells (0.232 +/- 0.017 SEM). For two hours after LLLT, the average velocity of mitochondrial movement in PD cybrid neurites was significantly (p < 0.003) increased (to 0.224 +/- 0.02 SEM) and restored to levels comparable to CNT. Mitochondrial movement in CNT cybrid neurites was unaltered by LLLT (0.232 +/- 0.017 SEM). Assembly of complexes in the mtETC was reduced and oxygen utilization was altered in PD cybrid neuronal cells. PD cybrid neuronal cell lines with the most dysfunctional mtETC assembly and oxygen utilization profiles were least responsive to LLLT.
The results from this study support our proposal that axonal transport is reduced in sporadic PD and that a single, brief treatment with near-infrared light can restore axonal transport to control levels. These results are the first demonstration that LLLT can increase axonal transport in model human dopaminergic neuronal cells and they suggest that LLLT could be developed as a novel treatment to improve neuronal function in patients with PD.